Tuesday, 17 December 2013

It's Christmas Already?!

Wow. I just signed in and realised I haven't blogged in four weeks. I've been so busy it didn't feel like that long!

There is really no reason why you should continue reading since I have been the worst blogger ever this year. I can't even explain how it happened, really. I started picking up editing jobs all over the place, and before I knew it, it was December 17th!

For those of you who have been kind enough to stick around while I've been absent, and checked in on me, I want to say thank you. I have a lot of work to do to catch up with everything I've missed. This includes not only reading your blogs, but any books you may have published while I've been running around like a crazy person! I've barely touched a book in months - it's an editing thing. I spend all day editing books, and by the end of the day, I just want to rest my eyes. I may need to invest in some audiobooks!

Before I shoot off again, I want to highlight three books, by three super cool people who I would have mentioned before if I'd been around - all of these books would make excellent Christmas gifts for yourself, or for friends and family, and even better than that - they are all very different!

First, one for the kids:








Blurb: Edward Everywhere is the beautifully illustrated story of Edward McKinnon. When his uncle sails into the jaws of a massive hurricane, Edward is compelled to search for him.

Edward is a smart eleven-year-old living north of Miami. He cares about saving endangered animals and the planet, but he was taught by his father that logic and money rule the world.

When his bohemian uncle, Theo, arrives on his sailboat for a visit, their formerly strained relationship is turned around when Theo teaches Edward that life isn't always about logic, but about believing.

When Theo goes missing on his boat during a hurricane, Edward launches his father's modified golf cart from the roof of his house to search for Theo. The craft is drawn into a wormhole, beginning an adventure through time and space that has Edward traveling to the famous pirates' den Port Royal, Jamaica, meeting Captain Henry Morgan, and helping him defeat the Spanish Main.

Edward uses his intelligence, logic, and science to help himself out of many sticky situations, and he uses his newfound faith in himself to believe that anything is possible.

Seriously, guys. If you have kids, they will love this story. I helped edit this book, and I fell in love with Edward, and his hilarious parrot, Jerry. What's great about it is, it's educational for children without being pushy, and there are jokes inside that will make adults laugh, that will go over the kids' heads.  I couldn't recommend this book more highly, and the illustrations inside are stunning!


Next, one for the contemporary romance fans: 


Blurb: Christmas is Eden's favourite holiday, until Declan Fox reappears in her life to put a dampener on her festive spirit. The boy who made her school years a misery isn't the boy he used to be, though. Matured and working as a mechanic, Eden starts to see a side to him she never knew was there.

While Declan used to find any excuse to torment Eden, now he uses any excuse he can to talk to her, at least, until an unexpected sleepover takes them both by surprise. As Declan cuts off all contact, Eden is convinced his sudden desire to get close to her was another of his childish pranks.

Suddenly, the most wonderful time of the year turns into a time of self-doubt that no amount of mince pies and feel-good Christmas movies can fix. However, when Declan shows up under the mistletoe, Eden has a big decision to make. With him blowing hot and cold, can she really trust that he's grown up and changed, or will the memories of the past keep her from having a chance with the one guy she could never forget? 

I did a beta read for this book, and it's really cute. It's only a novella, so the story line is quite condensed, however, if people can buy that Colin Firth's character can fall in love with the woman who cleans his holiday home in Love Actually in two weeks, they can buy a story about a complex couple with a history! There is a LOT of heart in this story, and of course, lots of festive awesomeness! 



Finally, something for those who don't want to read about Christmas, or romance, but want a very gritty novella that will make them think:



Paradise Incoming by Alex Tanner


Blurb: Sometimes, when you're travelling, you want to do something a bit different. Sometimes - just sometimes - you head so far off the beaten track you wind up in No Man's Land.

My name is Wesley Morey. In November 2001, in the wake of the 9/11 attack on America...

... We found a track that no man wants to walk.


This book kept me awake. I couldn't put it down until it was finished because I needed to find out what happened next. And when I'd finished it, I couldn't stop thinking about it, as if the characters were real and these events really did occur. Alex Tanner is amazing, and if you don't know her name yet, you will! 

Monday, 18 November 2013

Monday Mini Update!

Hey everyone,

I am SO, SO busy it's not even funny! I want to give apologies in advance for not keeping up with blogs this week - and ditto for replying to comments. I will do my best but I have a bunch of work on and I'm going away at the weekend so I need to cram everything in as fast as I can!

Since I'm so busy I have had to drop out of NaNo. :( However, I am still working on Game On Book 3, just not as intensely as I would have if I'd been able to keep up with NaNo.

I did my Andrew McNaughton tribute post on Friday, but I do have one more update for you. Nick Wilford emailed me over the weekend and asked me to send on his thanks to every single one of you for all you've done for him and his family over the past week. Between us, we managed to collect £462 for Andrew's charity, and a bunch of you joined in with the funeral celebrations which allowed me to create this video. I would love, if you haven't seen it already, for you to take a look and share it with friends and family to help Andrew's memory live on.

Friday, 15 November 2013

Farewell, Andrew McNaugton

Thanks to Carrie Butler for creating this awesome virtual balloon!


So, today is the day of Andrew McNaughton's funeral. During a week of sadness, I know for sure I have been lifted by the kindness and generosity you have all shown for Nick Wilford and his family as they slowly begin to prepare and adjust for life without Andrew. (If you'd like to join in with the blogger virtual funeral for Andrew, the details are here)

Aside from when I let you all know how much you raised, this will probably be the last time I post about Andrew until the anthology launch, so I want to take this time to thank you all again for everything. Messages, donations, pictures, ideas on ways to help, and this exceptional outpouring of love and support have overwhelmed me, and I know it has filtered through to Nick. Your messages will be passed on as the family will need all the help they can get once the funeral is over, and they try to find some semblance of normality without Andrew. 

Fellow blogger Michelle Wallace called Andrew "an amazing young man who inspired a writing community." - This is perfect. A perfect description for Nick and Heather's superstar.

So far this morning, your balloons, and flowers, and candles have made me cry - not just with sadness for Andrew's family, but with happiness that you all care enough to release a balloon in the middle of the night, or light a candle and say a prayer, or create a virtual balloon so those who couldn't get access to a real balloon could still join in the celebration of Andrew's life. In a world where people often utter things like, "Nobody cares anymore," you have proved them all wrong. You've proved that, when it counts, people DO care. They love, and they feel and they grieve for people they've never met because we're all connected - not just through the magic of the internet  but through the fact that, when it comes down to it, we could all imagine ourselves in the terrible position of losing someone we love.

This post stands, not only as a tribute to Andrew, but to every single one of you who reads this, who thinks about Andrew today, who has sent a message for Nick, who has donated, who has joined or will join in with Andrew's funeral celebrations, and who has said a prayer, and felt this loss as if it were your own.

I thank you sincerely for everything.

Wednesday, 13 November 2013

One more tiny request for Nick Wilford...

Hey guys,

Thank you all so much for your comments on my last post. The donations coming in for Nick and his family have overwhelmed me, and I can't wait to share with him and all of you how much we managed to get! I will be taking donations for the rest of the day so if you would like to donate, you can Paypal your contribution to kyralennon (at) gmail (dot) com.


I do have one further request, though I know many of you are already aware of this. Andrew's family have asked if those who cannot attend Andrew's funeral (Friday, 11am UK time) would be able to release a red balloon for him - and say a prayer for him. Red was Andrew's favourite colour, and this is such a sweet idea, I thought it might be nice if we joined in. Again, no pressure, please only do what you can! However, if you will be releasing a balloon, please could you take a photo of it and email it to me at the above email address, and let me know your location (city or state is fine, it doesn't have to be too detailed!). I plan to create an Andrew balloon collage to send to Nick and his family, as another way to hopefully lift their spirits at this awful time. Let's fill the world with love for Nick and Heather's superstar boy!

Again, thank you for everything! <3 br="">

EDIT: Some of us are having the hardest time finding helium balloons (small town woes) - so while balloons are what Andrew's family have asked for, if you can't do that, perhaps you could take a photo of yourself wearing red, or light a red candle in Andrew's memory. (Thanks to Annalisa Crawford for the ideas!) - all of this can still go towards the collage. The aim is to show Nick and Heather that we all attended the funeral in our own way.

Monday, 11 November 2013

Support for Nick Wilford and Family

I hesitate to start a Monday morning with sad news, but I'm hoping most of you already know it by now, and have had a little time for the news to sink in.

For those who don't know, no doubt many of you follow Nick Wilford. He's a writer, and one of the most supportive, hard-working people I know. One of the things he has been passionate about is raising money for his stepson, Andrew McNaughton. Andrew had cerebral palsy, and the fundraising by Nick and his family was to help get Andrew to a specialist college so he could continue his education with all the support necessary for him to thrive.

Sadly, Andrew passed away unexpectedly on Saturday morning.

Over the weekend, I witnessed a massive outpouring of love and sadness for Nick and his family from fellow writers and bloggers. People who have never met Nick, and never met Andrew, but were touched by his story and felt compelled to help any way they could. Many of us contributed to Overcoming Adversity: An Anthology for Andrew and as such, we were all connected to him in a small way.

Clare Dugmore, Mary Pax and I took some time over the weekend to discuss what we can do to show Nick that we are here for him, and we decided the best thing we can really do is continue to raise funds to go to a charity of the Wilford/McNaughton family's choice. I've taken on the donation collection duties, simply because I live in the UK, and it just makes more sense since Nick is in the UK, too.

The plan is for those who wish to contribute to send a donation to my Paypal account, where I will collect it all and send it on to Nick. If you would like to contribute, or even if you just have a message you'd like me to pass on, my email address is: kyralennon (at) gmail (dot) com.

I plan to send over the donations on Wednesday, of course, if any come in after that, I will send those along too. But I'd like to have most of it done by then.

For all your generosity so far, I thank you. It is genuinely touching to see how much support you have for Nick, and how something that affects one of us ripples through the blogging community, pulling us together. I am so proud to be part of it. Bloggers are the best!

 My thoughts continue to stay with Nick, Heather and their daughters at this time.



Wednesday, 6 November 2013

A Very Game On Christmas - Out Now!

“A Very Game On Christmas” follows on directly from “Blindsided,” and is a short, bonus story which takes place at Bree Collinson’s 21st birthday party, three days before Christmas. Similar to “A Beginner’s Introduction to Game On,” the story is told from different characters’ points of view.

Find out how the Westberg Warriors handle Radleigh and Leah’s return to Los Angeles, how Freya and Will are adjusting to their new relationship, and take a sneaky glimpse into the lives of the other characters introduced in “Game On.”

Please note: “A Very Game On Christmas” could be considered Game On 2.5 to clarify the order the books should be read. It is not a full length novel, merely a way to gently ease readers toward Game On 3. It is not essential to read this book to understand the next, it’s just a bit of light-hearted Christmas fun!
**
Yup, I did it! I released the Game On Christmas story I wrote last year as a free ebook. You can get it from Smashwords here.The reason I decided to release it now is that I'm getting moving on Book 3, and it really does make a nice, smooth pathway towards Bree's story, as well as giving some subtle clues about what will happen in the rest of the series. ;)

The book is also available on Amazon, but it's not free yet, hence the Smashwords link lol!



Monday, 4 November 2013

Dominance, Alpha Males and Sex in Fiction


I'm taking a deep breath and delving into a topic that has been bothering me for some time. It might be rambly, but stick with me, because I genuinely want to know how you all feel about this.

Since Fifty Shades of Grey, erotica and dark NA fiction has been on the rise. I know these things always existed, but they weren't so much in the mainstream.

Recently I've read/edited a bunch of books in the darker area of NA. I'm not a big erotica fan. I don't seek it out, but I also don't have a problem with it. But here's the thing... it seems to me that scary alpha males with borderline abusive tendencies are becoming more common - not just in NA, but in YA, too.

I don't want to delve too deeply into what women want from a man - what y'all do in your own bedrooms is your own business! ;) BUT, with the amount of people lapping up these books about men who attack when another guy so much as glances at his woman; who bark out orders; who utter the exceptionally overused phrase, "Tell me who you belong to/Tell me you're mine" - I gotta ask, what's the deal? Do women really want to be treated this way, or is it just that people are using books the way they are supposed to be used - as an escape?

I hear you saying, "If you don't like it, don't read it!" And I agree. But another thing I've seen a lot of lately is books which don't have any sign or indication of possessiveness, then suddenly, bang, the couple are going at it and the man is uttering those words I hate. Is there no way to write a hot sex scene WITHOUT dominance?

Before any erotica fans jump down my throat, I want to be clear. I don't have an issue with it.I'm not disparaging those who write or read it, I'm just trying to understand the scary alpha trend. I have actually read two books recently that have handled dominance without it being tacky and cringeworthy: Tears of Tess by Pepper Winters, and The Broken by Ker Dukey.

I've written an alpha male in Game On. Radleigh McCoy. He's very much the "wanting to be in control" type, but I didn't feel I needed to have him making Leah feel like she was inferior for that to be true. If he'd been all, "You belong to me," she'd have punched him in the face.

I get that for the majority of people, it probably is just an escape. But I really do have to wonder about young people who read these books as exploration. In my day, girls reached for Forever by Judy Blume - not books filled with bondage, spanking and mind games. Are they going to think this is the norm? IS this the norm, and I've just... missed something?! :p Books in this area often have weak female leads - ones who are scared of the guy, and rationalise staying with either, "It's okay because he's good in bed," or, "He only does it because he loves me." It's one thing to create characters who like it rough, but quite another to have a man pushing a woman to do things that terrify her because she's afraid the guy will leave her.

These aren't new thoughts. Not to me, or to anyone, because these questions are brought up over and over again. But since some books I read recently triggered this random mess of thoughts, I thought I'd share it.







Friday, 1 November 2013

All I Want for NaNo and Game On Bloghop Winners!

Ah, NaNo has arrived and I am... well, I'd be happy if there was one more day left in October to get ready lol! However, there's no stopping the time, so this afternoon, I will be settling down at my laptop and getting started!

In the interests of getting in the mood for NaNo, I'm taking part in the All I Want For NaNo bloghop! This was set up by Jennie Bennett, David Powers King, Becca Ann, Kelley Lynn, and Jessica Salyer.

These guys have teamed together to release a Christmas anthology, and to celebrate the release, they want to know what we want for NaNo! This hop also comes with great prizes:



Jennie's giving away a 50 page critique + an ecopy of The Spirit of Christmas
Jessica's also giving a 50 page critique + an ecopy of The Spirit of Christmas
Kelley's giving a $25 Amazon Giftcard + an ecopy of The Spirit of Christmas
David's also giving a $25 Amazon Giftcard + an ecopy of The Spirit of Christmas
Cassie's giving a choice of any of her ebooks + an ecopy of The Spirit of Christmas
 
So, what do I want for NaNo? My only wish is to finish it as well as I finished CampNaNo last year. I wrote Blindsided and it came out almost perfect with minimal edits needed. I don't know how I did it, but if I can do that again, I would be thrilled! 

Game On Bloghop Winners
 
I'd like to extend my thanks to all the people who entered the Game On Bloghop! There were only a few of us, but that's okay, y'all made an effort and I appreciate it!
I had seven prizes on offer, but as only seven people entered, everyone gets a prize! SO, here's how they breakdown:

1) New paperback copies of Game On and Blindsided - WINNER Annalisa Crawford
2) An e-copy of one of my books WINNERS: Clare Dugmore, Alex Tanner, Theresa Paolo, and Sydney Aaliyah
3) A full manuscript edit (2 winners) WINNERS: L.G Keltner and Elizabeth Seckman

I will contact all of you over the weekend or early next week about your prizes!

Right, I'd best get started on work! Happy NaNo-ing, everyone!

Thursday, 31 October 2013

NaNo NaNo!

Sorry, apparently I'm having a Mork and Mindy flashback lol!

After very little consideration, I've decided I'm going to be delving into NaNoWriMo this year. I really didn't intend to, but Game On Book 3 needs writing, and the characters are chatty, so I figured I'd go with it.

I've done no planning, but that's okay because the story has stewed in my head for a year, so I pretty much know how it's gonna go. I did intend to be releasing the book by this time, not just writing it, but things happen. I am sorry to everyone who has been waiting to see what happens next in Westberg, but if I get the story done this month, it should be out in January next year!

Also, the bonus Game On Christmas story I wrote last year will soon be available as an ebook. I plan to make it free, but you know how things go on Amazon. It may cost 77p for an eternity! The point behind the Game On Christmas story was to prepare for the next book, from Bree's POV. Since I have now plotted out the whole series, this small glance into the lives of the characters does in fact offer some insights into what will come next, so it's worth having! I will keep you up to date on the progress.

Finally, it is the last day of the Game On bloghop! There's still time to join in as I won't be reading the entries until late tonight - so if you want to play, the details are here!

Happy Halloween!

Monday, 28 October 2013

Game On Bloghop!

Good morning! It's time for the Game On Bloghop!

For those who have just found this, here are the details:

The Game On Series is centered around a soccer team in the U.S, and those of you who have already read the books will know the hottie of the series is Radleigh McCoy. Between October 28th and October 31st, I want to hear from you about your sporting crushes!

Does David Beckham do it for you? What about swimming sensations Michael Phelps or Rebecca Adlington? When did you first notice your sporting crush, and what do you like best about them? Have you ever been lucky enough to see them in action? Please keep posts to a maximum of 500 words (this is for the benefit of Clare Dugmore who offered me a 10-page essay! ;) LOL!).

Yes, of course there are prizes!

1) New paperback copies of Game On and Blindsided
2) E-copies of any of my books (3 winners)
3) A full manuscript edit (2 winners)


So, who is my sporting crush? Well, over the years there have been quite a few! The Olympics certainly brought some hotties to my attention! However, if I'm going to be perfectly honest, there is one man in sport who has had a strong grip on my heart for many years:
Yup. WWE's Randy Orton is the one for me! Seriously, look at those lips, those tattoos... *whimpers*. It is entirely Clare Dugmore's fault that I fell in love with him. Well, not exactly, but she - many years ago - reminded me how much I loved watching wrestling and Randy Orton was pretty much the first guy I saw, followed closely by Edge (who I also still love!). I've not yet been lucky enough to see Randy Orton wrestle, but one day, I am going to make it happen!!

 You can join in with the bloghop anytime over the next few days - and I will be looking over all the entries at the end of the week! Come join the fun!

Wednesday, 23 October 2013

Christina Rains: Romance in "The Shadow" from the 13th Floor Collection


Yes, Christine Rains is back to visit on her blog tour for the 13th Floor Collection! Christine might just be the busiest lady I know, and seeing her work so hard is super inspiring! Today Christine tells us about the romance between Veenya and Galen from "The Shadow". Take it away, Christine!



VEENYA & GALEN

Veenya's life was easier when her only joys came from the rush of the hunt and dancing in the shadows. Born of dark magic, her only purpose was to fulfill her Master's orders. Fraternizing with other shadow assassins of her clan was frowned upon, but she couldn't resist Galen's pull. When she fell in love with him, she gave herself fully. Except now she's a traitor, and the clan is hunting her. Never before would she think of running from her lover, but she doesn't want to risk his life too.

As the second in command of the clan, Galen is feared. He's good at what he does. Very good. His deadliness with a blade is only matched by the tenderness which he shares with Veenya. It devastates him when he learns she has refused their Master's orders, and she is now targeted as an enemy. His loyalty had always been to the clan, but it had never been challenged as it is now.




Veenya and Galen's story is heartbreaking. They found one another in their dark and dangerous world. With each other, they have something none others of their kind ever find: love. When Veenya is marked a traitor, Galen feels he has no other option than to hunt her. She pleads with him to join her and run away. Yet there is nowhere in the world where shadows do not touch. Their Master will be able to find them.

Though “The Shadow” is a short story, it's packed full of intense emotions. And though their relationship has shattered, Veenya sees something whole and new beyond the darkness of the shadows. The question is: will Galen see it too? 


**


Title: The 13th Floor Complete Collection
Author: Christine Rains
Genre: paranormal romance

Release date: October 13th, 2013

Blurb:
Six supernatural tenants
Living in a haunted apartment building
On a floor that doesn't exist.

Six novellas telling their tales.

A retired demon acquires a price on his head.
A werewolf is hunted by her pack.
A modern day dragonslayer misses his target.
A harpy challenges Zeus for the soul of the man she loves.
A vampire is obsessed with a young woman he can't find.
A banshee falls in love with someone who's death she has seen in a vision.
And a sweet ghost must battle a primal monster to save them all.

All the stories take place at the same time intertwining their lives together on the 13th Floor.

Includes “The Shadow,” a bonus short story.

Goodreads: http://www.goodreads.com/book/show/18460150-the-13th-floor-complete-collection


Author Bio:
Christine Rains is a writer, blogger, and geek mom. She has four degrees which help nothing with motherhood, but make her a great Jeopardy player. When she's not writing or reading, she having adventures with her son or watching cheesy movies on Syfy Channel. She's a member of Untethered Realms and S.C.I.F.I. The 13th Floor series is her first self-published series. She has eight novellas and twenty-one short stories published.

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/authorchristinerains
Twitter: https://twitter.com/@CRainsWriter
Goodreads: http://www.goodreads.com/author/show/4017568.Christine_Rains

Buy links:
 

Friday, 18 October 2013

The Game On Bloghop!

Do not adjust your monitors! I really have posted two days in a row!





To celebrate the release of the 2nd Edition of Game On, and the new covers, I'm throwing a bloghop! Here are all the details:

The Game On Series is centered around a soccer team in the U.S, and those of you who have already read the books will know the hottie of the series is Radleigh McCoy.

Between October 28th and October 31st, I want to hear from you about your sporting crushes! Does David Beckham do it for you? What about swimming sensations Michael Phelps or Rebecca Adlington? When did you first notice your sporting crush, and what do you like best about them? Have you ever been lucky enough to see them in action?

Please keep posts to a maximum of 500 words (this is for the benefit of Clare Dugmore who offered me a 10-page essay! ;) LOL!).

Yes, of course there are prizes!

1) New paperback copies of Game On and Blindsided
2) E-copies of any of my books (3 winners)
3) A full manuscript edit (2 winners)

It would be awesome if you could spread the word about this hop, but it's not a requirement. Mostly, I want everyone to have fun!

Aand, the new Kindle versions of Game On and Blindsided are available know!
Amazon US
Amazon UK

Thursday, 17 October 2013

Edits and Pitches and Bloghops!

Hey, what's this? A real blog post from me? Surely not!

Here's the thing, I have barely paused for breath in the last few weeks. I've been doing a ton of editing work, and I LOVE it, but boy, it's tiring. One of the biggest reasons for me not blogging lately is that I've been reading all day long. When I finish work, my eyes just want to close. This is also the reason why I am SO far behind on reading all of the books you guys have published in the last few months. I need to spend some time soon sorting out my Goodreads list because I know for sure there are books missing that I want to read. Actually, maybe I will do this next....

The WIP I recently finished and haven't told anyone about yet (well apart from my CPs, of course) was on a"rest" because... well, based on the exhausting process of editing Game On, I have now realised that it's okay not to rush the publishing process. This new book feels special, and that's why I wanted to make 100% sure I'm happy with it before I put it out. *giggles* SO, last night I happened to see the #AdPit Twitter contest thing going on and as I never usually have anything to pitch, I figured since I did, I would. This was my pitch:

"One girl. One band. The publicity stunt from hell." 

And, an agent favourited it, so I sent off a query and my first ten pages last night! Eeek! The pitch was made on a whim, so I'm not expecting miracles BUT I am hopeful. And scared. This whole query thing is new to me!

EDIT: Just received a very polite rejection letter - and that's totally fine with me! It's only my first rejection, so I'm pretty upbeat lol!

Also, I just mentioned that I've been editing Game On. I know I've mentioned it here before but it's all done now, and I'm just finalising covers and such. It's SUPER exciting, and it's also been useful in helping me prepare for Game On book 3! To celebrate the Game On re-launch, I will be doing a bloghop, stay tuned as the details will be coming soon!

Finally, I changed up my blog layout! I don't know how long I'll keep it, but I like it for now!

Wednesday, 16 October 2013

(Never) Again Bloghop!

The lovely Theresa Paolo released her debut novel, (Never) Again, this week, and to celebrate, she's having a bloghop!

Here are the deets: Liz, the main character of (Never) Again got her heart broken and refused to ever open it up to anyone again. We all know how that goes though. How many times have you swore off something only to step right back into it? So for this bloghop I want to know what it is you swore you would never do again and then wound up doing. It could be anything. Dating a guy, drinking, going on the roller coaster that made you vomit, anything.



 Okay, so I figured this would be simple, because I'm sure everyone has something they promised themselves they'd never do again. As it turns out, I have quite a lot!

The one I'm going to go with has to do with dating - it seemed fitting!

When I was at school, my first boyfriend sort of happened out of nowhere. I liked the guy, but I didn't know he liked me. He made the first move which surprised the hell out of me, and we started dating soon after. We had a kind of... intense relationship. We broke up a lot and every time, I decided I was done. At one stage, there was a full year and a half gap between us getting back together, but I was never able to fully break the connection. It finally ended when he arranged to meet me one time and didn't show. THAT was the final straw. But it took about three and a half years for me to draw a line under the relationship.

Yo-yo relationships SUCK.

You can buy (Never) Again by Theresa Paolo from Amazon by clicking here.

Thursday, 10 October 2013

How To Handle Bad Reviews Like a Rock Star

No, really!

I know I've not been around much, but I felt like this needed to be shared. Because handling a bad review is not easy, no matter who you are.

Recently, my favourite band, Fozzy, had a review written about one of their gigs on Metal Hammer. The reviewer said Fozzy's music is as "heavy as lettuce." - Prepare yourself for one of the most fantastic responses to a bad review you will ever see:

                                                      from Chris Jericho's Instagram!


That's right, kids. THAT'S how you handle a bad review!

Wednesday, 25 September 2013

Nerd Hop!

In honour of the release of Cassie Mae's How To Date A Nerd (which is awesome, btw), Cassie is holding a bloghop to celebrate all things nerdy! There is only one question: What is the nerdiest thing about you?

When I first heard about this hop, I posted a message on Cassie's Facebook page, saying "I'm not sure I'm that nerdy." Then reeled off a list of everything about me that IS nerdy. I was a little surprised lol!

I am a MASSIVE Harry Potter fan, and I think this is where the majority of my nerdiness is. I've read the books many times, and I own all of the movies (even though they are less than perfect!). I used to be an active member of a Harry Potter forum, and I could debate whether Snape was good or evil with the best of them! I enjoyed thinking up theories about how the books would play out, and I could quote passages off the top of my head. (I'm a little rusty now though!). When I was about 18, my boyfriend at the time bought me a Harry Potter bedroom set which consisted of a waste paper bin, and a lampshade which had glow in the dark snitches on. So, even though I was an adult, I had the bedroom decor of an eleven year old boy lol! I also have a proper Hermione Granger wand, a collection of Harry Potter playing cards and a Hedwig backpack!

Yeah. I'm nerdier than I thought! :p

Friday, 20 September 2013

More Than Just A Kiss Bloghop Winners!


Thank you to everyone who participated in the MORE THAN JUST A KISS Blogfest.. I had the BEST time reading through them all! I mean, really, who doesn't love a good kissing scene?!

Choosing the winners was quite tough, since we all have different likes and dislikes, BUT, we managed to reach a decision!

Here are our top three:

Our first place winner of a critique (not exceeding ten pages) from Cecilia, Christine, and I is

Our second place winner of a critique (not exceeding five pages) from Laurelin and Christine is

Our third place winner of a one page critique from Cecilia and Christine is

Congratulations!

Aand, we also have some bonus prizes to give out. Each of us judges picked one entry to win our bonus prizes. Here they are!
 
My pick to win IF I LET YOU GO:
 
Laurelin's pick to win FIXED ON YOU:
ROE!

Cecilia's pick to win TRULY MADLY DEEPLY YOU and REAPER'S NOVICE.:
ALEX TANNER!

Christine's pick to win all six volumes of The 13th Floor series:

Thanks again to all who entered,it was loads of fun!

Thursday, 19 September 2013

Alex J. Cavanaugh's CassaStorm is Here!

Before I get on to the awesomeness of Alex, I just want to say a quick note of thanks to everyone who supported me earlier this week when I was feeling so... blah lol. I'm still working through replies, but I really appreciate all your kind words!
 
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No doubt, you'll have seen our favourite ninja taking the world by storm ;) this week, with the release of CassaStorm! Huge congratulations, Alex! You deserve all the success in the world!


 
 
CassaStorm
By Alex J. Cavanaugh

From the Amazon Best Selling Series!

A storm gathers across the galaxy…

Commanding the Cassan base on Tgren, Byron thought he’d put the days of battle behind him. As a galaxy-wide war encroaches upon the desert planet, Byron’s ideal life is threatened and he’s caught between the Tgrens and the Cassans.

After enemy ships attack the desert planet, Byron discovers another battle within his own family. The declaration of war between all ten races triggers nightmares in his son, threatening to destroy the boy’s mind.

Meanwhile the ancient alien ship is transmitting a code that might signal the end of all life in the galaxy. And the mysterious probe that almost destroyed Tgren twenty years ago could return. As his world begins to crumble, Byron suspects a connection. The storm is about to break, and Byron is caught in the middle…

“With a talent for worldbuilding and a compelling cast of characters, Alex J. Cavanaugh combines high powered space battles and the challenges of family dynamics to provide readers a space opera with heart.”
- Elizabeth S. Craig, author of the Southern Quilting and Myrtle Clover mysteries

“I thought the revelation was going to be one thing and I was completely wrong … CassaStorm pushes the limits…”
- Tyson Mauermann, Speculative Reviews

“…mesmerizing story of survival, personal sacrifice, tolerance, and compassion. It’s a rare jewel that successfully utilizes both character and plot to tell a story of such immense scope and intimate passion…” - Nancy S. Thompson, author of The Mistaken

Find CassaStorm:



$16.95 USA, 6x9 Trade paperback, 268 pages, Dancing Lemur Press, L.L.C.
Science fiction/adventure and science fiction/space opera
Print ISBN 9781939844002 eBook ISBN 9781939844019
$4.99 EBook available in all formats

Alex J. Cavanaugh has a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree and works in web design and graphics. He is experienced in technical editing and worked with an adult literacy program for several years. A fan of all things science fiction, his interests range from books and movies to music and games. Online he is the Ninja Captain and founder of the Insecure Writer’s Support Group. The author of the Amazon bestsellers, CassaStar and CassaFire, he lives in the Carolinas with his wife.
 

Monday, 16 September 2013

A Monday Morning, Self-Involved Whine

Disclaimer: I used this title to warn people in advance of the whiny, self-pitying nature of this post. Also, this may not make any sense whatsoever, but I've had a bunch of stuff going around in my head for a long time, so it's time to purge my brain to make way for new, more positive thoughts. I promise to be my usual self next time!


Urgh. The joys of self-doubt. As a writer, I know this is part of the deal. I see other writers feeling the same way I feel right now, and I think, "But... you're amazing, everyone loves you and your books, how can you be insecure?" Which inevitably leads to me wondering if anyone feels that way about me, and my books.

I just finished writing what I consider to be my best book so far. According to some of my past reviews, I didn't set the bar that high to begin with lol. My reviews for Game On continue to baffle me. I know it's FAR from perfect, and I've been itching to edit it since I hit publish lol. The thing I cling to every time I see one of the bad reviews for Game On is that mostly, it comes with a "I think this writer has a great writing style, but..." - so I guess I just didn't nail the story as well as I thought I did. And I guess that's okay. It was my first book, and I had way more to learn than I even realised. 

And my new book. My CPs have been AMAZING.  They've all brought so much to the story, helping me re-shape things a little, spotting the silly mistakes I made. They all said they loved it - so what's the problem? Why isn't that enough? There are a couple of reasons. My MC makes a very questionable decision in the middle of the book. One that is so obviously going to backfire on her - and I'm worried it will be an issue. People will say she's stupid, made the wrong choice, hate her for it. But for her, in the context of the story, it makes absolute sense. Or it does to me. But my judgement isn't always the best - so maybe I'm wrong. And maybe, what I think is a strong book, is actually complete crap.

Also, what makes a book go from, "That was really good, I enjoyed it." to "OMG, I need to tell everyone about this RIGHT NOW!"? I definitely haven't written that book, but I'd like to think I've got it in me. Maybe I haven't. Maybe I'm destined to live in the land of mediocrity.

Blah. Sorry. The verbal vomit has been festering for a long time, which is why I sound like someone who sits alone in her room, rocking back and forth, and crying into my keyboard. It's not THAT bad. New ideas are forming, I have a couple of books tentatively started, and I'm too busy to sit around dwelling on all this. But it has been on my mind more and more recently. So, there you go. My Monday morning, self-involved whine.

I'm not really seeking answers here - but hugs are always appreciated!

P.S If you're new here, I'm not usually like this!